Jeff Anderson and Josh Pipkin
Boone’s Wine and Spirits
This week, I’m going to take you back to where I grew up — the Willamette Valley in Oregon. Now famous around the world for its spectacular pinot noirs, 50 years ago there were just a handful of pioneers trying to prove they had found the perfect place to grow this amazing and hard to grow grape. Names like Erath, Ponzi, Sokol Blosser and Adelsheim were some of the first to plant pinot noir, pinot gris, chardonnay and riesling. From just a few wineries in the 1970s, there are now over 700 producing some of the most incredible wines in the world from more than 70 different varietals. The two I’ll talk about today are Van Duzer Vineyards and Ken Wright Vineyards.
2019 Ken Wright Willamette Valley Pinot Noir
In 1976, Ken Wright took a trip to the Dundee Hills in the Willamette Valley and made up his mind that this was the place he would make some of the best pinot noir In the world. In 1986, he moved to Mcminnville and founded Panther Creek Vineyards. In 1994, he founded Ken Wright Cellars and now makes 13 single vineyard pinot noirs that rival the best in the world including his Abbott Claim vineyard that was named the no. 1 wine in the world in 2012. His Willamette Valley Pinot Noir is an affordable blend of most of the single vineyards. This wine for the price is spectacular. Dark ruby red in color and intense aromas of ripe cherries, plums and cedar followed by more ripe dark fruit like blackberries and currants, this wine is so good! It finishes long and smooth and is delicious all on its own but can be enjoyed with lamb or salmon or to be honest just about anything. ($30.49)
2019 Van Duzer Pinot Gris
Van Duzer was founded by Carl and Marylynn Thoma in 1998 as one of the first to plant vines in the Van Duzer corridor, a gap in the coastal range leading to the Pacific Ocean. The corridor is what makes the whole valley a special place for growing cool climate grapes. The winds coming off the ocean keep the air cool at night and along with warm summer days it is perfect for cool climate grapes like pinot noir, chardonnay, pinot gris, riesling and many others. On the nose of the pinot gris you’ll find notes of pear, peaches, mango and key lime followed by crisp apple, a nice minerality, bright acidity and a light sweetness at the end. This is a great wine for all occasions and perfect for seared scallops. ($17.49)
Once upon a time in 2018, I brewed a beer in Florida with some friends. Aaron Fuss and I (Bonfire employee at the time) hopped on a plane, won some money in Vegas and then collaborated with the wonderful crew at “Invasive Species Brewing” in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The beer was a big hit at both our breweries respectively. Two years later, Aaron (Glenwood Brew Pub) and I (Boone’s) decided to brew it again. COVID-19 put our plans on hold, but this spring we made it happen.
The beer you must try is a DDH Pina Colada IPA brewed with 2-row, white wheat, flaked rice, citra, lotus and Sabro hops. We then added both pineapple and passion fruit purees along with 50 pounds of toasted coconut. The result is an 8% ABV tropical aroma filled wonder. Come try our Boone’s exclusive Pina Collaba collaboration with the Glenwood Brew Pub for $9.99 per 32-ounce crowler.